Archive for the 'Whatever' Category



Monday, June 14th, 2010
Summer Fun Contest Winner

The winner of an autographed copy of WICKED ENCHANTMENT is Jacqueline C.! Congrats!! Please drop me an email at anyabast(at)gmail.com to collect your prize. 🙂

Monday, June 7th, 2010
Summer Fun

Cross-posted to The Bradford Bunch

I can’t believe it’s already June. Where has the year gone? It seems like yesterday it was New Year’s Eve. I hope you’re all having a good summer so far.

I’ve been under some pretty tight deadlines, but have managed to squeeze in some fun here and there. We took a trip to the lovely NC beaches recently (may they forever stay lovely) and hit our first Renaissance Festival of the season on Saturday. There’s nothing like dressing up in twenty layers of clothing and walking around in 90 degree heat (it manages to be a blast, anyway).

Mostly I’ve been writing, though.

Right now I’m working on a novel called JADED, it’s the second of a short historical fantasy series I’m writing for Berkley Heat. The first book is entitled JEWELED and it releases in November. jeweled As you may be able to tell by that gorgeous cover, this two-book series is very hot menage a trois romance. You can read the first chapter here.

I turned in DARK ENCHANTMENT at the end of May, the third book of my Dark Magick series. CRUEL ENCHANTMENT (the second book) releases in September. cruel_enchantment_coversm You can read the first chapter of Cruel Enchantment here.

The other morning I woke up and said, “Great Scott! Cruel Enchantment’s release is just around the corner!” (Okay, I actually didn’t say, Great Scott, but you get the picture.) In any case, September will be here before I know it, considering how fast the first six months of 2010 have flown by. So I decided to implement some Summer Fun Contests to get ready for the release.

In June, July, August & September (probably October and November, too), I’ll be holding monthly contests on my two newsletters and my discussion list. If you’re not a member of any of these and you want to participant in the contests, now is the time to subscribe. Just please understand that if you join the discussion list, you’ll get…you know, discussion. Here are the links:

Writerspace newsletter (link is over on the left)
The Sultry Pen (Yahoogroups)
Silverpurr (Yahoogroups discussion loop)

And, just for the heck of it, since I haven’t held a contest over here in ages, leave a comment to this post before 5pm est on Friday, June 11th, and you’ll have a chance at an autographed copy of WICKED ENCHANTMENT. Winner will be chosen by random drawing. I’ll announce the winner after 5pm est on Friday. International entrants are always welcome. This contest is void where prohibited.

So, what are your plans for summer fun this year?

Monday, May 3rd, 2010
Back from RT 2010!!

I returned yesterday from RT 2010 and had a lovely time as usual. This year it was in Columbus, Oh, and, I have to say, I think this was my favorite hotel so far. The hotel was large, yet the rooms were close to the convention area and there were numerous food choices in and around the site. I had a great time meeting up with old friends and meeting new.

Here are a few of the pictures I pulled off my camera this morning for your enjoyment. 🙂

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First off, a few members of the Bradford Bunch! We met for dinner one night. Here’s the first half of the table, authors from left to right: Stacey Kade, Anya Bast, Ann Aguirre, and Beth Kery.

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The other half of the table, from right to left: Jess Granger, Laura Bradford, Shelli Stevens, Lauren Dane. Vivi Anna, and Megan Hart.

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Anya Bast (Me!) and Laura Bradford.

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Anya Bast and Lauren Dane

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Megan Hart and Lauren Dane at the RT Book Awards, where Megan accepted an award for Best Erotic Romance of 2009!

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That’s me and my husband.

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Standing in front of a big-ass picture of my cover.

A few random photos from the Faery Ball (awesome costumes every year)….

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Angela Knight and Stephanie “Flash” Burke (who always has amazing, incredibly imaginative costumes)

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Wednesday, April 7th, 2010
Bitten By Books….

Bitten By Books is discussing the Elemental Witches Series today and giving away an author swag bag!

Wednesday, March 31st, 2010
Cover for Jeweled

Defined by magic. Ruled by desire.

In the Court of Edaeii, magic-imbued Evangeline is rewarded for her gift with a sapphire stone set in the perfect curves of her flesh. Her greatest rival in the royal court is the enigmatic Anatol, instilled with his own powers to manipulate illusion. He may better her in magic, but he is her absolute equal in a ferocious sexual energy begging for release.

They share something else—they’re both targets of low-born revolutionaries bent on over-throwing the palace of the privileged few. Rescued from the mobs by Gregorio, a brilliant insurgent, they’re given sanctuary. But in this warm refuge, Evangeline soon finds herself torn between the magic of one man she has always desired, and the excitingly new and radical moves of another. For her, there is only one choice.

Evangeline, Anatol and Gregorio come together as one to explore the possibilities of love beyond reason, and to indulge—for as long as they can survive—in pleasure without limits.

Now available for pre-order.

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010
Writing is a Mysterious Process

Cross-posted from the Witchy Chicks blog

I’ve been writing since I was 21. That’s…uhm….well, let’s just say that’s about fifteen years now. 😉 It’s a long time, yet, even so, the writing process continues to amaze and mystify me.

Every writer has her own process and every writer goes at her own speed. Compared to many of my friends, I’m a fairly slow writer. My process is blocked often by the questions I seem to ask myself twenty five times a day. What happens next? Or I know what happens next, but how should it happen? Or What is this character feeling right now? Or What would this character do now? These questions rule my writing days. And for every book I’ve written (lots and lots) I have been a slow writer stopping to ask myself these questions at multiple times throughout the day.

Then came JADED.

JADED is the second book in a two-book series I’m writing for Berkley Heat. I finished the first book, JEWELED, at the end of 2009. JEWELED was a pretty difficult book for me to write mostly because of the heroine. In the beginning of the book she’s emotionally stunted because of the type of magick she wields. She’s also arrogant and self-centered. Evangeline is not very likable at first, but there are reasons for it.

In JEWELED, Evangeline grows and changes a lot from the beginning to the end. The book didn’t start to become easier for me to write until about mid to halfway through when she started to warm up and care about others besides herself. This was a really painstakingly slow book for me to write because of that, but I was very happy with it when I reached the end.

JADED follows the story of a female secondary character from JEWELED. Lilya also grows and changes a lot from the first page to the last. I tend to write heroines who do that. Women who start out damaged or powerless and who heal and/or find their power throughout the story. Lilya of JADED is no exception. She’s an incredibly damaged character to begin with, and she’s jaded (hence the title). She’s really no picnic to write.

Yet, JADED is flying for me. I have never had a book come so easily. I’ve never written a book this fast, either. I’ve been trying to figure out why this book is different from all the other books I’ve written and I just don’t know. But when I sit down to write these character’s stories (Lilya is not the only character, of course, this is romance…a ménage à trois romance at that) it’s just….flowing.

Not that I’m complaining. I’ll take it. 🙂

It’s just got me thinking about the writing process and how mysterious it is–where characters come from in the writer’s mind, and how the plot develops as a result of the author’s worldviews and opinions. Because even if the writer isn’t deliberately inserting her worldviews and opinions into the plot and characters, it’s happening anyway. It’s unavoidable. It might be subtle, but it’s there.

When I open up JADED, it’s almost like I’m just channeling for these characters. I’m merely a conduit. I always feel somewhat that way–as if the characters exist somewhere in my subconscious and all I need to do is open up a pathway to them and let them speak. But with JADED it’s especially strong.

And, why? I still have no idea. It remains a mystery.

Thursday, March 11th, 2010
Bringing myself back to center

Living mindfully means to be completely in touch and aware of the present moment and what you’re doing in it. It’s awareness without judgment, accepting your current moment for exactly what it is. It means that, for example, when you eat, you’re only eating. You’re completely immersed in the process. You’re not gulping down your food, barely tasting it, while thinking of the twenty things you need to do before you go to bed. Mindfulness is about appreciating and living in every moment as it occurs. It’s the ultimate cure for the monkey mind.

And it’s not easy.

It’s a little like living in Vipassana meditation. In Vipassana, you sit, breathe deeply and still your mind. You’re reaching for peace of mind, an emptying out of thought, but when you have a thought, (and you will unless you’re a yogi), you don’t berate yourself for it. You note it by thinking, ‘thought’ and then let it go. Or if you have a pain in your leg, you think ‘pain’ and let it go. You never judge yourself for these distractions and you always bring yourself back to center.

Living mindfully has always reminded me of this type of meditation. It’s like meditation in the moment…every single moment.

I started down this path in my early twenties, over ten years now. My life has changed a lot since then. I have a career as a writer with deadlines (sometimes multiple deadlines) and promotion to do. I became a mother. My daughter has grown up and I now have to run her to preschool, playgroup, ballet (maybe gymnastics soon). I have an ailing grandmother to visit weekly, and a father and stepmother to visit weekly. A house to keep clean. Grocery shopping. Cooking. You know how it is.

My life is more than mindful, it’s simply FULL, sometimes to overflowing.

I’m not complaining. I’m incredibly lucky and wouldn’t have it any other way. And if I rarely have time to devote to my once religious formal sitting meditation practice, I have living mindfully–meditation all the time. One day I know my daughter will be older and I’ll have time to meditate again, but I’m not pushing for her to grow up. Instead I’m savoring her younger years and letting things be what they are.

That’s not to say I manage mindfulness all the time. Yeah, I wish. Sometimes I become overwhelmed, impatient, irritated and locked in that OMG-I-have-to-get-this-this-and-this-done stressful monkey brain place. But when that happens, I take a deep breath. I hear the sounds around me. I feel my feet in my shoes and my clothes against my skin. I smell the scent of whatever is there in that moment. I don’t judge myself for the distraction.

I simply bring myself back to center.

For me, it’s not just a stress reduction (and it is a great one), it’s a way of life. A method of living I strive for every day. It’s not easy, but it works for me.

Monday, February 22nd, 2010
Delicious Tease Contest

I’m over on Tracy Wolff’s blog today, giving away a copy of WICKED ENCHANTMENT. Stop on by for a chance to win.

I know I haven’t been blogging much. I’m under a couple pressing deadlines right now and when that happens I have to cut down on blogging a bit. I figure you all probably want books from me rather than blogs, anyway. 🙂